- Stationary or portable
- We choose and prepare materials correctly
- Making the main box
- Legs and assembly diagram
- Bells and whistles: ash pan, smokehouse, grill
Today we will talk about the invariable attribute of most country houses. There are many variations of metal barbecues that differ in ergonomics and decorative design. Let’s go from simple to complex and explain how to make the brazier comfortable, while leaving room for imagination.
Stationary or portable
There are no special tricks in making a brazier – it is a simple iron box with holes. It is much more difficult to make it convenient, universal for different tasks and conditions. Better yet, be able to remove the iron “monster” from your eyes when not in use, or take it with you to the river, while it should easily fit with the rest of the things in the trunk.
Stationary iron barbecues are popular for other reasons. If there is no need to often transfer them from place to place, respectively, there are no restrictions on weight – thicker and more durable metal can be used for manufacturing.
We offer the design of a folding portable grill, light and compact when folded, but you can always make it solid, inheriting the general principles. Approach the choice of the type of barbecue reasonably and carefully. Remember that portable barbecues are not decorated with forging, besides, it is better to make them from heat-resistant steel..
We choose and prepare materials correctly
Why? The main reason is gain in weight and durability, more neatness. A brazier made of carbon structural steel is susceptible to increased scale formation when burning wood, because of the cyclic heating, its walls are quickly “eaten up”. In addition, black sheet steel tends to change its structure under the described conditions, which is manifested in the appearance of waves, swelling and plane deformations on the bottom and walls. So it is likely that you simply cannot disassemble and reassemble a portable grill made of thin carbon steel..
Considering the above, we can safely discard such “improvised” materials as barrels, canisters, case of system units and other disposable iron. But 40-liter cylinders for natural gas can be called suitable due to the rather thick metal and the radius shape, which excludes overvoltage points. But they must be burned out before use, forever getting rid of traces of gas condensate. Of the features of such a blank, we only point out that the small width of the cylinders limits the length of the skewers. It is more practical to use a cylinder for making a smokehouse.
On average, a forged carbon steel brazier should have a wall thickness of 4, and an unreinforced one – from 6.5 mm. For heat-resistant steel, reinforcement is almost never required: walls made of it (from 13% chromium and more than 10% nickel, with a low carbon content) with a thickness of 3.5 mm or more survive the hearth almost unchanged.
And an extreme warning: any grill will look proportional and impressive if the master has taken due attention to the preparation of the details:
- cut as accurately as possible with a tolerance of no more than 0.5 mm;
- fix the workpiece to be processed with clamps to the edge of the table or in a yew;
- use a larger angle grinder – the larger the plane of the disc, the more accurate the cut.
Do not forget about safety measures, be sure to wear overalls, use gloves and goggles.
Making the main box
The width of the barbecue is determined based on the length of the skewers, on average it is 45 cm. Length – depending on the volume of cooking, but preferably not less than the full length of the skewers, they are conveniently stored inside. The optimal size is 800 mm, which is enough for cooking and at the same time preparing a new portion of coals.
It is still trickier with height: the roughly thick layer of coals at the bottom should be 1.5 times the thickness of the largest piece of meat. And the distance between meat and coals should not go beyond 170-200 mm. In general, a height of 290 mm will be sufficient. Remember that the meat should not be heated by hot air, but by the heat radiation of the coals directly.
According to the established dimensions from 4 mm sheet of grade 20X20H14C2 (or similar) we cut out:
- bottom 412×800 mm;
- two longitudinal walls 800×290 mm;
- two transverse walls 420×290 mm.
From a “black” corner 25x25x4 mm we make a frame with oblique undercuts at the corners. The internal dimensions are important: 816×429 mm, you need to measure on the outer surfaces, taking into account the wall thickness, do not forget to check the diagonals.
Modifying the side (long) walls. In the center on the long side we make a cut with a depth of 95 mm and a width of 10 mm, having previously drilled the part to round off the edge. On all walls, with an interval of 30–40 mm, we make staggered holes of 10 mm for side blowing.
We weld two or three longitudinal corners 20×20 mm to the bottom from below or put on steel rivets, it is possible from ordinary steel. We place them with an indent of 120 mm from the edges, and another 30 mm closer to the center we make two rows of 8 mm holes for air flow into the central part of the brazier. On the front side of the bottom, we weld short (50–70 mm) pieces of angle steel around the perimeter, they can also be riveted.
The remaining part of the “box” is the upper frame made of a corner 20x20x4 mm, welded, like the lower one, but with external dimensions of 412×800 mm. We make hooks on the outer shelves of the frame in one of the following ways:
- We make a couple of cuts by 12 mm and, heating the tongues red-hot, bend them outward.
- We squeeze in a vice and weld two strips of steel of the same thickness as the walls, with an overlap of 10 mm and cut from them hooks 20–30 mm wide.
- Cut pieces of the corner of 2-3 cm and weld along the perimeter of the frame.
At the corners of the bottom, 15 mm from each side, we drill a 6 mm hole. We put the bottom in the bottom frame, center and transfer the holes to the corner. We make four L-shaped cotter pins 50×150 mm from 6 mm hairpins. Weld a 10 mm rod perpendicular to the center of the bottom. With the final touch on the shelves of the upper frame, we make straight and oblique cuts to fix the skewers.
Legs and assembly diagram
Barbecue legs are made of 35 mm corner pieces. For the possibility of installation on the ground, the bottom of each leg is scalded with a “heel”.
35 mm from the top edge on one of the shelves, an incision is made to the full depth. In the same shelf, 250 mm lower, a second cut is made, then they are both connected longitudinally. At the bottom, the cut continues for another 40 mm. The resulting “tongue” should be bent into the corner, aligned, grabbed from below by welding and cut off the protruding excess.
At the top, the incision continues by another 15 mm, but here it needs to be expanded to 7–8 mm, that is, by the thickness of the brazier wall and the corner shelf of the upper frame. It is recommended to file this area of the part manually with a file, adjusting the kerf to ensure that the legs fit snugly against the body. After installing all the legs, you need to transfer through the holes at the corners of the bottom and the frames to the kerchiefs inside the corners, and then drill 8 mm holes according to the marks. Legs must be folded in a “square” and drilled one 10 mm hole in the center and two 6 mm holes 150 cm from the edges of the uncut shelf.
The brazier is going like this:
- Put the bottom in the bottom frame.
- Install walls (short ones cover long ones).
- We insert the upper frame with hooks on the walls of the barbecue.
- We hook each leg with a hook to the wall, align and insert the cotter pin into the hole.
After use, the grill can be collected in a relatively light compact stack. An inverted top frame with a slight offset is placed on the bottom. On top of it there are short, then long walls, all this is covered by an inverted bottom frame. Now you need to put the legs on top, orienting the protruding bar between them.
Insert another 10 mm rod into the holes in the centers of the legs, pull both pairs with threaded cotter pins. Put the oppression on top and weld the bar threaded into the corners to the rod fixed to the bottom. Now, to disassemble the brazier, it is enough to unscrew the cotter pins and pull the corners to the side, after which the entire stack will remain free.
Bells and whistles: ash pan, smokehouse, grill
In the end, we will tell you about some additions for the barbecue that simplify cooking and service. Everything is modular, so you can only use what you need.
First of all, if you still assembled a stationary grill, make it 50 cm higher than planned. Place an 8 mm expanded mesh on the bottom on 50 mm legs from the corner, weld the handle in the center. This will make the burning of the coals and the temperature more even, facilitate the removal of ash after burning..
Using the system of hooks, as on the upper frame, you can also equip the grill with an openable lid, and if you make the legs 30-50 cm longer in height, you will get a support for a small canopy from the rain. If you are a fan of cooking meat on a grill, do not be lazy and get a square 10–12 mm stainless steel bar for it, weld with a gap of 15–18 mm. Such a grill will be heavy, stable and will fit perfectly into the upper frame of the new barbecue.